2022 Legislature             CS for CS for SB 988, 1st Engrossed
    2         An act relating to in-person visitation; providing a
    3         short title; creating s. 408.823, F.S.; providing
    4         applicability; requiring certain providers to
    5         establish visitation policies and procedures within a
    6         specified timeframe; providing requirements for such
    7         policies and procedures; authorizing the resident,
    8         client, or patient to designate an essential
    9         caregiver; establishing requirements related to
   10         essential caregivers; requiring in-person visitation
   11         in certain circumstances; providing that the policies
   12         and procedures may require visitors to agree in
   13         writing to follow such policies and procedures;
   14         authorizing providers to suspend in-person visitation
   15         of specific visitors under certain circumstances;
   16         requiring providers to provide their policies and
   17         procedures to the Agency for Health Care
   18         Administration at specified times; requiring providers
   19         to make their policies and procedures available to the
   20         agency for review at any time, upon request; requiring
   21         providers to make their policies and procedures easily
   22         accessible from the homepage of their websites within
   23         a specified timeframe; requiring the agency to
   24         dedicate a stand-alone page on its website for
   25         specified purposes; providing a directive to the
   26         Division of Law Revision; providing an effective date.
   28  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   30         Section 1. This act may be cited as the “No Patient Left
   31  Alone Act.”
   32         Section 2. Section 408.823, Florida Statutes, is created to
   33  read:
   34         408.823 In-person visitation.—
   35         (1) This section applies to developmental disabilities
   36  centers as defined in s. 393.063, hospitals licensed under
   37  chapter 395, nursing home facilities licensed under part II of
   38  chapter 400, hospice facilities licensed under part IV of
   39  chapter 400, intermediate care facilities for the
   40  developmentally disabled licensed and certified under part VIII
   41  of chapter 400, and assisted living facilities licensed under
   42  part I of chapter 429.
   43         (2)(a) No later than 30 days after the effective date of
   44  this act, each provider shall establish visitation policies and
   45  procedures. The policies and procedures must, at a minimum,
   46  include infection control and education policies for visitors;
   47  screening, personal protective equipment, and other infection
   48  control protocols for visitors; permissible length of visits and
   49  numbers of visitors, which must meet or exceed the standards in
   50  ss. 400.022(1)(b) and 429.28(1)(d), as applicable; and
   51  designation of a person responsible for ensuring that staff
   52  adhere to the policies and procedures. Safety-related policies
   53  and procedures may not be more stringent than those established
   54  for the provider’s staff and may not require visitors to submit
   55  proof of any vaccination or immunization. The policies and
   56  procedures must allow consensual physical contact between a
   57  resident, client, or patient and the visitor.
   58         (b) A resident, client, or patient may designate a visitor
   59  who is a family member, friend, guardian, or other individual as
   60  an essential caregiver. The provider must allow in-person
   61  visitation by the essential caregiver for at least 2 hours daily
   62  in addition to any other visitation authorized by the provider.
   63  This section does not require an essential caregiver to provide
   64  necessary care to a resident, client, or patient of a provider,
   65  and providers may not require an essential caregiver to provide
   66  such care.
   67         (c) The visitation policies and procedures required by this
   68  section must allow in-person visitation in all of the following
   69  circumstances, unless the resident, client, or patient objects:
   70         1. End-of-life situations.
   71         2. A resident, client, or patient who was living with
   72  family before being admitted to the provider’s care is
   73  struggling with the change in environment and lack of in-person
   74  family support.
   75         3. The resident, client, or patient is making one or more
   76  major medical decisions.
   77         4. A resident, client, or patient is experiencing emotional
   78  distress or grieving the loss of a friend or family member who
   79  recently died.
   80         5. A resident, client, or patient needs cueing or
   81  encouragement to eat or drink which was previously provided by a
   82  family member or caregiver.
   83         6. A resident, client, or patient who used to talk and
   84  interact with others is seldom speaking.
   85         7. For hospitals, childbirth, including labor and delivery.
   86         8. Pediatric patients.
   87         (d) The policies and procedures may require a visitor to
   88  agree in writing to follow the provider’s policies and
   89  procedures. A provider may suspend in-person visitation of a
   90  specific visitor if the visitor violates the provider’s policies
   91  and procedures.
   92         (e) The providers shall provide their visitation policies
   93  and procedures to the agency when applying for initial
   94  licensure, licensure renewal, or change of ownership. The
   95  provider must make the visitation policies and procedures
   96  available to the agency for review at any time, upon request.
   97         (f) Within 24 hours after establishing the policies and
   98  procedures required under this section, providers must make such
   99  policies and procedures easily accessible from the homepage of
  100  their websites.
  101         (3) The agency shall dedicate a stand-alone page on its
  102  website to explain the visitation requirements of this section
  103  and provide a link to the agency’s webpage to report complaints.
  104         Section 3. The Division of Law Revision is directed to
  105  replace the phrase “30 days after the effective date of this
  106  act” wherever it occurs in this act with the date 30 days after
  107  this act becomes a law.
  108         Section 4. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.